Lack of Comprehensive Sex Education
Kellee Terrell, News Editor, TheBody.com, New York
Thanks to former Presidents George Bush and Bill Clinton, since 1997, our federal government has invested almost 1.5 billion in abstinence-only education, while numerous studies have shown that these programs are completely ineffective in delaying sex. And in the end, what this means is that our youths have not received the crucial information that they need to protect them and ward off unwanted pregnancies and STDs, including HIV.Show More
And despite President Obama channeling more federal funds to comprehensive sex education, this does not mean that most schools across the country are incorporating these lessons into their curriculum or that these lessons are LGBT friendly.
That's sad, because knowledge is power. You cannot protect yourself if you don't know how or understand why you need to. And while there are many factors that contribute to why HIV diagnoses are on the rise among black youth, it's clear that a lack of information is part of that complex problem. When it comes to this disease and other reproductive health issues, our young people just don't know what they need to.
We need to shift our mentality from looking at sex education as something that encourages our youths to have sex -- which it doesn't, because they are having sex anyway -- to understanding it as arming our children with what they need to fight for their health. Without it, our children pay the price with their lives.